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Grant Details

Grant Number: 5R00CA256351-04 Interpret this number
Primary Investigator: Williamson, Timothy
Organization: Loyola Marymount University
Project Title: Adapting and Testing a Novel Self-Compassion Intervention to Reduce Lung Cancer Stigma
Fiscal Year: 2023


Project Summary Given advances in screening and treatment, the number of people in the U.S. living with lung cancer is expected to increase by 25% (from 571,340 to 724,610) by 2030. Nearly all (95%) patients diagnosed with lung cancer report experiencing stigma (i.e., the perception and internalization of negative appraisal from others attributed to one’s lung cancer), which is perhaps the most prominent psychosocial issue in this population and contributes to poor psychological and physical health outcomes. A critical gap in the field of cancer control science is the lack of empirically supported patient-focused interventions that target the reduction of lung cancer stigma for this growing patient population. The goals of this K99/R00 are to adapt the existing Mindful Self-Compassion (MSC) psychosocial intervention to address anticipated delivery challenges and target the reduction of lung cancer stigma as well as to seek preliminary evidence for the efficacy of the adapted MSC intervention in reducing lung cancer stigma. The K99 study will involve a two-phase process of 1) conducting stakeholder focus groups to guide the iterative adaptation of MSC intervention activities and materials and 2) conducting in-depth interviews with lung cancer patients to explore patients’ reactions to intervention content and preferences for format and delivery. The R00 study will involve a two-phase process of 1) conducting a pilot RCT (n=60) to test preliminary efficacy of the adapted MSC intervention on primary (lung cancer stigma) and secondary outcomes (depressive symptoms, quality of life) and 2) conducting interviews with purposively sampled high responders (n=10) and non-responders (n=10) from the MSC condition (assessed post-intervention) to examine participants’ reactions to study participation. The overall objective of this K99/R00 is to provide Dr. Williamson with additional training and mentorship to become an independent cancer control investigator translating findings from basic behavioral scientific research into the development of tailored psychosocial interventions for cancer patients. Training aims include: 1) Psychosocial intervention development and adaptation in cancer; 2) advanced qualitative and mixed-methods design and analysis; 3) translational psychological research (synergy between basic and applied health science); 4) delivery of mindfulness- and compassion-based interventions in cancer care; and 5) professional development. Dr. Williamson is mentored by Dr. Jamie Ostroff at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center along with expert support from co-mentors (Drs. Lisa Carter-Harris and Jun Mao) and other significant contributors (Dr. Christopher Germer, Ms. Kathleen Lynch), who are all committed to Dr. Williamson’s career development. The proposed training plan will facilitate Dr. Williamson’s transition to independence as a cancer control investigator conducting a programmatic line of research that 1) characterizes disease-specific challenges of understudied cancer groups and 2) translates findings from basic behavioral research into tailored psychosocial interventions that address such challenges and ultimately enhance quality of life.


Examining evidence of lung cancer stigma among health-care trainees.
Authors: Studts J.L. , Deffendall C.M. , McCubbin S.L. , Hamann H.A. , Hoover K. , Brymwitt W.M. , Williamson T.J. .
Source: Journal of the National Cancer Institute. Monographs, 2024-06-05; 2024(63), p. 20-29.
PMID: 38836527
Related Citations

Sleep Disturbance as a Mediator of Lung Cancer Stigma on Psychological Distress and Physical Symptom Burden.
Authors: Williamson T.J. , Garon E.B. , Irwin M.R. , Choi A.K. , Goldman J.W. , Stanton A.L. .
Source: Psychosomatic medicine, 2024-05-01; 86(4), p. 334-341.
EPub date: 2024-02-27.
PMID: 38436657
Related Citations

Lung Cancer Screening and Stigma: Do Smoking-related Differences in Perceived Lung Cancer Stigma Emerge Prior to Diagnosis?
Authors: Williamson T.J. , Rawl S.M. , Kale M.S. , Carter-Harris L. .
Source: Stigma and health, 2023 Nov; 8(4), p. 497-500.
EPub date: 2021-04-08.
PMID: 38239631
Related Citations

Slipping through the cracks: Who is eligible but does not receive a healthcare provider recommendation for lung cancer screening?
Authors: Williamson T.J. , Walsh L.E. , Rawl S.M. , Carter-Bawa L. .
Source: Lung cancer (Amsterdam, Netherlands), 2023 May; 179, p. 107185.
EPub date: 2023-03-31.
PMID: 37023535
Related Citations

Lung Cancer Screening Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practice Patterns Among Primary and Pulmonary Care Clinicians.
Authors: Carter-Bawa L. , Walsh L.E. , Schofield E. , Williamson T.J. , Hamann H.A. , Ostroff J.S. .
Source: Nursing research, 2023 Jan-Feb 01; 72(1), p. 3-11.
EPub date: 2022-10-16.
PMID: 36260526
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Developing an ACT-based intervention to address lung cancer stigma: Stakeholder recommendations and feasibility testing in two NCI-designated cancer centers.
Authors: Kaplan D.M. , Hamann H.A. , Price S.N. , Williamson T.J. , Ver Hoeve E.S. , McConnell M.H. , Duchschere J.E. , Garland L.L. , Ostroff J.S. .
Source: Journal of psychosocial oncology, 2023; 41(1), p. 59-75.
EPub date: 2022-02-06.
PMID: 35129091
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Reducing stigma triggered by assessing smoking status among patients diagnosed with lung cancer: De-stigmatizing do and don't lessons learned from qualitative interviews.
Authors: Ostroff J.S. , Banerjee S.C. , Lynch K. , Shen M.J. , Williamson T.J. , Haque N. , Riley K. , Hamann H.A. , Rigney M. , Park B. .
Source: PEC innovation, 2022 Dec; 1, .
EPub date: 2022-03-04.
PMID: 36865902
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Facets of stigma, self-compassion, and health-related adjustment to lung cancer: A longitudinal study.
Authors: Williamson T.J. , Garon E.B. , Shapiro J.R. , Chavira D.A. , Goldman J.W. , Stanton A.L. .
Source: Health psychology : official journal of the Division of Health Psychology, American Psychological Association, 2022 Apr; 41(4), p. 301-310.
PMID: 35324247
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